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Diploma to degree : why successful vocational education and training Diploma graduates undertake a university enabling course
conference contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Suzanne StorerSuzanne Storer
The aim of this paper is to explore the factors that influence vocational education and training (VET) Diploma graduates’ decisions to proceed to a degree but undertake a university based enabling course as part of that journey. The pathway for VET graduates in Australia who wish to undertake higher education studies has been described as a ‘crazy pathway’ or ‘seamless’ with some being well documented and advertised and others unclear and haphazard. Over the past few decades the number of university entrants with a VET qualification has risen significantly. However, even where formal articulation arrangements are in place, evidence suggests VET graduates may lack confidence in moving directly from the VET sector into higher education. This is suggested by the enrolment in university enabling courses of students who have successfully completed a VET Diploma. There is a diversity of factors that influence this decision but two stand out as being of importance. One is a lack of confidence exhibited by individuals in their ability to move between the two sectors; this is based on their perception of having a gap in their academic literacy skills and ability to adapt to the different teaching and learning environments. Another is confusion about the process required to move between sectors of education, particularly VET to higher education.